I have read two posts in the past week telling me to make sure my loved ones know what my wishes are for my funeral, etc. I’ve already told my wife, but being a blogger, I thought I’d let all of you know as well.
The number one thing I want for my funeral is this: whatever my wife wants. Every time I talk to her about this kind of thing, she says she doesn’t want to think about it. Yes, but I’m a planner (she knows this) and I like to think ahead to possible scenarios. So this post will also help her to remember what my wishes were, just in case she gets senile.
Years ago someone asked me if I thought cremation was ok with God, and if this would present a problem in the resurrection. I said, “Well, I figure that if God can create man out of the dust of the ground, I’m pretty sure he can RE-create people out of the dust of the ground. I mean, read Ezekiel 37 (“Dem bones, dem bones, dem….DRY bones!”): God has no problem with resurrecting a collection of bones into a person again. Does the Bible say that we should bury our dead in a 6x2x2 box six feed underground in a special place called a “cemetery”? No.
Doctrinally speaking, I believe that (unless the rapture precedes it), I will die at some point in the future. At that point, my soul (the part of me that is “me”) will immediately be with Jesus Christ in heaven, while my body remains on earth. At some point in the future, without getting into too many end-time details, my body will be reunited with my soul, and I will be transformed (I Corinthians 15:51-57).
So does it matter to me what happens to my body while I’m not in it? No, not really. I have informed my wife that she is to spend as little money on my funeral as is legally possible. She should have the memorial at our church, and pay the funeral home only what is necessary to follow the law (picking up the body, etc). I don’t even need a gravestone, if she goes that route.
I’ve been present at the funeral home for a few members of my family, and I’ve seen the high-pressure sales tactics that can be employed. I’m not saying all funeral homes do this, but the ones I’ve been present for have said things like, “She would have wanted the best.” In preparation for this, I have informed my wife that I don’t want the best, I want the cheapest, because I want her to spend that money on things that matter, like our children, grandchildren, her bills, missions, etc. I don’t want her unable to pay her electric bill because she was talked into buying the $8000 casket for me with extra pillows.
The way I see it, she has two basic options:
1. Put me in a plain pine box and bury me without a vault so I can become quick worm food.
2. Cremate me and dump my ashes in the woods somewhere.
By the time I get back, it won’t matter anyway.